Endangered Wild Cats

When a species has been listed as “critically endangered” or “endangered,” it is at high risk for extinction in the future. endangered wild cats iucn category list

Critically Endangered

A “critically endangered” species has experienced a loss in population of 80% or more over the past 10 years or the past three generations, whichever time period is longer. “Critically endangered” can also mean an 80% population reduction that is expected to take place in the next 10 years (or next three generations). A species can also be labeled “critically endangered” if it has become extremely fragmented (living in scattered locations or even a single location). Other criteria that is used when listing a species as critically endangered includes:

  • A population of less than 250 mature individuals with an expected continuing decline of 25% over the next three years (or one generation), and severely fragmented or living in a single location.
  • A population of less than 50 mature individuals
  • There is a 50% change of extinction within the next 10 years or three generations.


A species is listed as “endangered” when there is a high risk of extinction with a population reduction of at least 50% over the next 10 years or three generations, the species’ population is severely fragmented and can only be found in no more than 5 locations. Other criteria can include:

  • The population has less than 2500 mature individuals with an expected decline of 20% within 5 years or two generations, the population is fragmented or the species only lives in one location.
  • There are less than 250 mature individuals
  • There is a 20% chance of extinction within 25 years or five generations.

You can read more about IUCN classification here.

Endangered Wild Cats

Many wild cats, including big cats and small wild cats, are currently listed as “critically endangered,” “endangered,” or “near threatened.”

Endangered Big Cats

West African lion (Panthera leo senegalensis) – Critically Endangered

South China tiger (Panthera tigris ssp. Amoyensis) – Critically Endangered – Possibly Extinct in the Wild

Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris ssp. sumatrae) – Critically Endangered

Amur leopard (Panthera pardus ssp. orientalis) – Critically Endangered

Javan leopard (Panthera pardus ssp. melas) – Critically Endangered

South Arabian leopard (Panthera pardus ssp. nimr) – Critically Endangered

Asiatic cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus venaticus) – Critically Endangered

Central Asian leopard, North Persian leopard, Persian leopard, West Asian leopard (Panthera pardus ssp. saxicolor) – Endangered

Sri Lankan leopard (Panthera pardus ssp. kotiya)- Endangered

Asiatic lion (Panthero leo ssp. Persica) – Endangered

Snow leopard (Panthera uncial) – Endangered

Tiger (Panthera tigris) – Endangered

Amur tiger (Panthera tigris ssp. altaica) – Endangered

Indochinese tiger (Panthera tigris ssp. corbetti) – Endangered

Malayan tiger (Panthera tigris ssp. jacksoni) – Endangered

Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris ssp. tigris) – Endangered

Endangered Small Wild Cats

Iberian lynx (Lync pardinus) – Critically Endangered

Iriomote cat (Prionailurus bengalensis ssp. Iriomotensis) – Critically Endangered

Fishing cat (Prionailurus viverrinus) – Endangered

Flat-headed cat (Prionailurus planiceps) – Endangered

Scottish wildcat (felis silvestris grampia) – Endangered


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